INDIAN RIVER COUNTY — An 18-year-old suspected of shooting a Sebastian River High School football player and friend execution style last month pleaded not guilty Wednesday, court records show.
Deputies said Elisha Martin, of the 600 block of Carnival Terrace, Sebastian, planned to kill 16-year-old Logan Spencer days before the attack because he thought the teenager stole about $20,000 from his home. Martin, who deputies suspected sold drugs, picked up the teen Feb. 18 from his girlfriend’s home, drove him to a wooded area in Fellsmere and shot him in the head with a .38 caliber revolver, reports show.
Indian River County deputies originally charged Martin with first-degree murder, giving false information to a law enforcement officer during an investigation and possession of marijuana with intent to deliver. State prosecutors on March 15 formally charged Martin with second-degree murder, court records show.
Under state law, the only charge a prosecuting attorney cannot file is first-degree murder. All first-degree murder cases must be presented to a grand jury.
Martin was a senior at Sebastian River High School and Spencer was a junior, deputies said. Spencer was reported missing Feb. 18, the same day he was last seen on a neighbor’s surveillance footage being picked up by Martin, reports show.
Prior to the shooting, Martin told witnesses that he was going to kill whoever stole the money, which he made from drug sales, sheriff’s detective Michael Dilks previously said. Martin picked up Spencer under a ‘ruse’ that the two were going to shoot guns in Fellsmere, Dilks said.
Martin confessed to witnesses that he shot and killed Spencer, reports show. A resident found Spencer’s body Feb. 21 in the 13000 block of 87th Street in Fellsmere, deputies said.
Deputies found the firearm used in the shooting at Martin’s home.
Deputies questioned Martin last month and arrested him after he gave multiple stories about his interactions with Spencer, reports show. The murder charge was added in late February.
Community members held a candlelight vigil for Spencer Feb. 28 at the Barber Street Football Field located at Tulip Drive and Barber Street. Dozens remembered the teen as a ‘protector’ who had his teammates’ back.
Thursday, Martin remained at the county jail. Martin was due in court at 1:15 p.m. May 1, court records show.